This study addresses the nature of accounting innovations within the context of the Quincy Mining Company's response to the disruption of the domestic copper market following the Civil War. Primary documentation is used to first define the firm's cost management activities, then to define the characteristics of the firm's internal accounting practices that contributed to these activities. It is argued that, although accounting was a participant in the cost control process, it was a paternalistic social structure that provided the impetus for the firm's struggle to remain profitable.

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